Stop defending Turkey’s secularism – it’s been a lie all along

Published on the World Post/Huffington Post, on 2 May 2016. 

Finally, after over a decade in power, the true face of Turkey’s governing Justice and Development Party, or AKP, is surfacing. The speaker of the Turkish Parliament, Ismail Kahraman, said that the new constitution that the AKP is preparing will have no reference to secularism.

AKP officials quickly denied the intention but many Turks felt as if an idea was planted in their brain — an idea they would have to get used to. Fearing a secularism-free constitution would be the first step towards introducing Shariah law in their republic, secularist Turks immediately started defending secularism fiercely. Apparently, they do not realize that this secularism got them in trouble in the first place.

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